Current state of Alias Composer and Studiopaint (3D)

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bkd
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Current state of Alias Composer and Studiopaint (3D)

Unread postby bkd » Sun Sep 18, 2016 9:55 am

I wonder where now these perfect products are? As far as I understand Composer was built into Maya (??). What about Studiopaint (last was 9.5 version?)? Is it part of today's Studiotools (Alias Studio) or not? I worked for a while with Alias Studiotools 13.5 for Windows (first version without IRIX) and it had Paint module. Is it equivalent to Studiopaint? These two always been IRIX exclusive product or existed on other platforms?

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foetz
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Re: Current state of Alias Composer and Studiopaint (3D)

Unread postby foetz » Sun Sep 18, 2016 2:47 pm

bkd wrote:As far as I understand Composer was built into Maya (??).

not that i know of

What about Studiopaint (last was 9.5 version?)? Is it part of today's Studiotools (Alias Studio) or not?

it is indeed but to what extend and how well the integration works out is up for discussion :P

These two always been IRIX exclusive product or existed on other platforms?

composer was an irix exclusive but i'm not sure about studiopaint. the industrial design branch of alias was available for solaris, hpux and at some point even aix but i don't know whether they shipped studiopaint with them or not

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Re: Current state of Alias Composer and Studiopaint (3D)

Unread postby GIJoe » Mon Sep 19, 2016 12:32 am

as far as i know studiopaint 3d as in the 2D/3D paint/texturing hybrid with hardware brushes was not ported but abandoned in 2000. instead a new module that perhaps shares the name was developed as part of alias studio on other platforms than irix. but i believe that is strictly 2D and a concepting tool?

irix studiopaint functionality on the 3D/texturing side can be found nowadays in mari by the foundry (and a lot more, obviously). also studiopaint's interface seems to have been the inspiration for mudbox which also has some (unrelated) paint functionality and adopted SP3D's methods for adjusting brush resize/pressure with gestures as well as the shelves. mudbox also shares the very handy snap-paint-stroke-to-curve function with studio paint.

both programs have originally been developed at weta which was known as a place using studio paint a lot in the texturing pipeline for a good few years and way after the software was discontinued.

bkd
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Re: Current state of Alias Composer and Studiopaint (3D)

Unread postby bkd » Mon Sep 19, 2016 11:05 am

foetz wrote:not that i know of


http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases ... 45732.html
But that for IRIX version only. Other platform versions have Fusion in them.


GIJoe wrote:but i believe that is strictly 2D and a concepting tool?

It seems you're right and Studiotools only had 2D part of Studiopaint...

By the way - Studiopaint as standalone application on IRIX always included 3D part?

GIJoe wrote:also studiopaint's interface seems to have been the inspiration for mudbox

Yes, good application with great possibilities.

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Re: Current state of Alias Composer and Studiopaint (3D)

Unread postby foetz » Mon Sep 19, 2016 3:53 pm

bkd wrote:http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/alias-wavefront-ships-maya-composer-55-73645732.html

oh, hehe, that was just a rebranding. it still was the standalone composer, they just called it maya composer. nothing of that has been integrated into maya either way.

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Re: Current state of Alias Composer and Studiopaint (3D)

Unread postby GIJoe » Tue Sep 20, 2016 12:34 pm

bkd wrote:It seems you're right and Studiotools only had 2D part of Studiopaint...

By the way - Studiopaint as standalone application on IRIX always included 3D part?


i think the paint module in alias is really an entirely different program. i remember seeing it in some alias training videos and it did not appear to have much in common with the full-blown irix application. i believe the developers of studiopaint 3d went on to create sketchbook pro for alias instead.

and as for the 3D part: it's not a separate mode or module or anything but rather the ability to load a 3d model into the document's layer stack, place 2D layers on top and merge those down onto the geometry, effectively baking them onto a texture - at least that's how i remember it, been a few years now - same principle as used by mari. most other 3d painters rather work with surface tracking for the brush and offer projection mode as a paint-tool instead. much faster/more intuitive to work with.

one downside of SP3D for me always was that it did not have photoshop-style layer blend modes beyond straight 'blend' nor did it have any layer styles. even in it's useful days this made regular roundtrips to photoshop necessary.

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Re: Current state of Alias Composer and Studiopaint (3D)

Unread postby bkd » Wed Sep 21, 2016 11:02 am

foetz, GIJoe - thanks for answers! Can you please explain to me next thing. In this page "http://download.autodesk.com/us/aliasstudio/qualcharts/spaint_9.5.html" Alias wrote about hardware brushes (there are two of them - 8 and 12 bit). I assume this is quantity of bits per one color channel(?). What advantage to designer give these 12 bits over 8? Or this is internal architectural extra bits that remove rounding errors and then in any case results output to monitor in 8 bit per color channel?? Does MGRAS (and VPro of course) exactly OUTPUT 12 bit per color channel through SGI 13W3 on monitors that support it?

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Re: Current state of Alias Composer and Studiopaint (3D)

Unread postby GIJoe » Wed Sep 21, 2016 12:30 pm

bkd wrote:I assume this is quantity of bits per one color channel(?). What advantage to designer give these 12 bits over 8? Or this is internal architectural extra bits that remove rounding errors and then in any case results output to monitor in 8 bit per color channel?? Does MGRAS (and VPro of course) exactly OUTPUT 12 bit per color channel through SGI 13W3 on monitors that support it?


choosing the 12 bit option should result in a higher quality and i think the systems did indeed output at 12 bits per channel which was considered their advantage. if the standard monitors were truly up to displaying that all that properly i would not know. for many cases you would probably not notice the difference to 8 bits anyway but for something like using soft gradients or taking the output into compositing and fiddling with the colors it would give extra headroom.
i vaguely recall an option to choose between 8 and 16 bit per channel document color depth in SP3D via environment variable. not sure how that's related. a yellow flyer in the booklet explaining the steps, anyone?

at any rate, stepping up the bit depth made things slower so it was all a tradeoff. i used SP3D mainly on a dual-600 V12 a few years after it's heyday so it was no issue. using that on a period-correct R5000 o2 in like '98 however might have been a different experience.

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Re: Current state of Alias Composer and Studiopaint (3D)

Unread postby foetz » Wed Sep 21, 2016 1:28 pm

GIJoe wrote:for something like using soft gradients or taking the output into compositing and fiddling with the colors it would give extra headroom.

exactly, that eliminated the color banding https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Colour_banding

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Re: Current state of Alias Composer and Studiopaint (3D)

Unread postby bkd » Wed Sep 21, 2016 10:35 pm

I wonder what overall precision of OpenGL pipeline (including rasterization part) implemented in hardware by SGI? In the mid-end (MGRAS, VPro) and hi-end (RE, IR). Do they implement full 32 bit floating point single precision (IEEE 754-1985) or something less (16-24 bit float)? Some time ago I tried to find it out from their press-releases but found almost nothing. By the way there is another one interesting thing according to final picture - so called sub-pixel precision. Here is quote from Google groups about PC cards: "As it was explained to me, The ATI FireGL X1, X2, T1, etc. has a subpixel precision of 4 bits, the Quadro2 was 6 bit, the Quadro4 and IBM FireGL 2,3,4 were 8 bit, Wildcat 3 and Wildcat 4 are 10 bit, and Quadro FX is 12 bit." And here you can find some pictures from viewperf "http://www.anandtech.com/show/458/20". Read the whole commentaries below pictures. In OpenGL there is a variable that stores that value returned by driver. It is called "GL_SUBPIXEL_BITS". In my home PC Quadro FX 580 (on Win7 x64) it returned 8 bit. When there will be enough time I want to play with it in Linux. Sadly I don't have at that monent my Octane MXE and can't test this thing in SGI.

bkd
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Re: Current state of Alias Composer and Studiopaint (3D)

Unread postby bkd » Sat Oct 15, 2016 8:22 am

Can someone explain why SP 9.5 not using hardware brushes with V6/V10 graphics (http://download.autodesk.com/us/aliasst ... t_9.5.html)? As far as I understand V10 is not worse in almost all positions comparing to MXE? What is the real reason of this thing? Marketing?


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